Australian Stock Horse
Perhaps made most famous by a scene in The Man from Snowy River during which an Australian Stock Horse & his rider plunge down the side of a mountain. This breed owes some of its quickness, toughness & adaptability to their brumby blood.
Developed over time from the original Australian horse breed the Whaler, the Australian stock horse’s original bloodlines arrived on the Australian continent in 1788. This included Thoroughbred, Cape of Good Hope Horse, Arabian, Timor Pony & Welsh Mountain pony.
Early horses on the continent were bred for strength, stamina & easy care in difficult environments. Only the strongest offspring were allowed to reach adulthood. Early in the 19th century additional Thoroughbreds were imported to improve local strains & the mid-20th century saw an infusion of American Quarter Horse.
The Australian Stock & the Waler horse have similar genetic roots, but are separate breeds today. Their common ancestor, the Station Horse was used during WWI by the Australian Army. They were prized for their endurance & robust nature.
Modern Australian Stock Horses
The breed was officially recognized in 1971 when the Australian Stock Horse Society was formed in New South Wales. Initial studbooks were created by three classifiers who assessed the conformation, breeding & athletic ability of a variety of animals. The finest were accepted in the studbook. There is controversy over adding American Quarter horse bloodlines, as some purists prefer older strains of the breed. Bringing outside blood into the studbook requires paying high fees to the society.
Average height 15-6.2 hands
Hardy & true